Sunday, July 24, 2011

Easy Almost Chicken Parmesan


I say almost because this is not breaded and fried like most. I had a pack of chicken breasts in the fridge that I needed to use up and wanted to try something different. I decided to do this and it turned out very yummy!

Easy Almost Chicken Parmesan

3-5 chicken breasts depending on size (I have found this can vary greatly depending on brand)
1 jar of spaghetti sauce (I used Classico Fire Roasted Tomato and Garlic)
shredded cheese (I used a pizza blend that contained mozzarella, provolone, parmesean and romano)
1 box of spaghetti noodles (I used Ronzoni Garden Delight Spaghetti noodles)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Layer chicken in a baking dish and pour spaghetti sauce on top of the chicken breasts. Cover with foil and bake for 1 to 1.5 hours. I always check my chicken with a meat thermometer so you may be able to go on the shorter end of cooking depending on your oven.

During the last several minutes of the chicken cooking, cook noodles as directed on the package. I strained them and added some butter to help keep them moist until serving the chicken.

Plate noodles, top with a piece of chicken and some sauce over the noodles. Top with cheese. Enjoy!

You could put the cheese on the chicken/sauce mixture and let it melt there but I enjoyed letting each person decide how much cheese they wanted so it worked better for us this way. This was a very tasty different way to use chicken. You could serve with some steamed veggies or a salad and it would be wonderful!

Happy Eating!
Amanda

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Strawberry Margarita Squares


My mom had us over for the 4th of July to have dinner. I made a dessert to bring along to share. I had these a couple of years ago and had always meant to make them but never did. They are a very refreshing dessert for summertime. You have the salty of the pretzel crust, sourness of the 1st layer from the margarita mix. Then the sweetness of the strawberry top layer. It's a perfect combo! So delicious!

I meant to garnish these but didn't have a chance. They would look lovely with some whipped topping, sliced strawberry and maybe a small slice of lime on top.

Strawberry Margarita Squares

Crust:
2 cups pretzels (1 cup crushed)
1/2 cup butter, melted
1/4 cup sugar

Filling:
2 pkgs. (8oz each) cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup thawed, frozen margarita mix, concentrate (non-alcoholic)
2 containers (8oz each) cool whip, thawed
1 pkg. (3oz) strawberry gelatin
1/2 cup boiling water
1 pkg (10 oz) frozen sliced strawberries in syrup
fresh strawberry slices (for garnish-optional)
lime slices (for garnish- optional)

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. For crust, finely crush pretzels in small food processor. Melt butter in small bowl in the microwave. Add crushed pretzels, sugar and melted butter into a bowl and mix well. Press mixture onto bottom of 9x13 baking dish. I used a small glass to help press it into place. Bake 10 minutes. Cool completely.

2. For filling, beat cream cheese and margarita mix in a bowl with a hand mixer until well-blended. Fold in 2 cups of cool whip. Using an offset spreader, carefully spread cream cheese mixture evenly over crust. Refrigerate while preparing strawberry layer.

3. Place gelatin in a bowl. Stir in boiling water; stir until completely dissolved. Add frozen strawberries and stir until strawberries separate and gelatin is thickened (a spoon drawn through mixture will leave an impression). Whisk in 3 cups of the cool whip. Pour over cream cheese layer, spreading edges. Refrigerate 3 hours to set.

4. Cut dessert into squares. Garnish each with remaining cool whip. Top with sliced strawberries and lime slices.

Hope you enjoy these as much as I do!

Happy eating!
Amanda